Maj Gen Kenneth D. Merchant, USAF, is Director, Global Reach Programs, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, DC. As the Capability Director, General Merchant is responsible to the Air Force Acquisition Executive for airlift, air refueling, training and special operations programs.
General Merchant was commissioned in 1980 through the Air Force ROTC program at Grove City College, PA where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in engineering management. He has been a Program Manager on numerous weapon system development and production programs, including the F-22, E-3, Air Force One, KC-10, E 4, Wind Corrected Munitions Dispenser, Sensor Fused Weapon, Joint Standoff Weapon, Low Altitude Navigation and Targeting Infrared System for Night, GBU-15 and the AGM-130.
General Merchant has also served as Air Staff Program Element Monitor for the Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile, and Executive Officer to the Commander, Pacific Air Forces. He directed an Area Attack Systems Program Office, Contractor Logistics Support Aircraft Materiel Systems Group, and Battle Management Command, Control and Computer Systems Wing. His commands include the Airborne Warning and Control System and Airborne Early Warning Control Systems Group, as well as the 551st Electronic Systems Wing at Hanscom AFB, MA, and was the first non-rated Commander, Air Armament Center at Eglin AFB, FL. General Merchant has also served as the Director of Logistics, Headquarters Air Mobility Command, Scott AFB, IL. Prior to his current assignment, General Merchant was the Program Executive Officer for Weapons at Eglin AFB, FL.
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